Lee Miller slipped away in her sleep at BowCrest Care Centre in Calgary on Saturday, May 29, 2021 at the age of 91 years. Lee was born on December 2, 1929 to Klem and Eva Eskowich on the farm near Margo, Saskatchewan. She worked hard on the farm, growing up during the great depression, and that work ethic was strong throughout her whole life. She was an excellent student, and went on to become a teacher, attending Normal School in Saskatoon. Her early career was spent in small country school houses, but soon took her to Uranium City where she met her husband, Mack, an RCMP officer.
Always adventurous, Lee rode horses bareback to school as a kid, Lee and Mack hitch-hiked together in Europe, they water-skied on lakes and rivers near Burnaby and New Westminster, and downhill skied at Mount Baker in Washington State and around the lower Mainland. It was in Hazelton, BC that they started their family in 1964 but for Lee, the pull back to Saskatchewan was strong. They settled in Young in 1967 where Lee became a tough, fair and well respected teacher to her many students over the years. During that time she also earned her B.Ed. through night school at U of S, making the trip back and forth to Saskatoon many, many times.
The family spent countless days at the cabin built with love on the shore of Fishing Lake, close to Lee’s childhood home, and Lee was so pleased and proud to share experiences there with extended family. Lee was the instigator of numerous family trips – among these were skiing in Banff while staying in a camper van, camping in northern Saskatchewan, and an exciting journey to Ukraine to connect with family that had been separated since the late 1920s.
Lee officially retired from teaching and the family moved to Saskatoon when the kids started university. For most people, retirement is a time to relax, but a passion for plants native to the prairie provinces led to more hard work in the form of a native plant nursery. Never one to stay idle for long, Lee also took teaching contracts at SIAST, SIIT, and particularly enjoyed teaching on local reserves. She liked the flexibility and took contracts around visits to her beloved grandchildren.
Fiercely loyal, loving and generous, Lee always had extra room at the table, and in the house or cabin. Family always knew where the key was hidden when they needed it. She loved a good visit, and definitely a good laugh! She spent a lot of time in her large gardens, or in the kitchen canning or freezing the harvest, or making perogies and cookies to share. Involving the grandkids in food harvesting and baking was a great joy to her!
At their children’s urging, Mack and Lee moved to Calgary in the summer of 2017. We are so grateful for the time this move allowed the family to spend with Mom / Grandma / Great-Grandma.
Lee was predeceased by her beloved husband Mack, her parents, Eva and Klem, brothers Bill (Gerda) and Harry (Freda), and two baby siblings. Left to feel the loss are her son Karl (Sanna), daughter Jody (Egon), grandchildren Ashley, Aidan, Mike, Maddi, Brendan, Kai, and Matilda, extra-special great-granddaughter Ilyana, and her beloved nieces and nephews and their families.
For Lee, relationships with family and friends were so important, and food was always a key component. We wish we could have a reception complete with perogies and cabbage rolls for everyone who wants to come, but due to current restrictions, a family-only celebration of life will be held on Saturday, June 12, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. A Video LiveStream will be available and we sincerely hope you will join us virtually on Lee’s tribute page at www.saskatoonfuneralhome.com . Because we can’t chat and share stories in person, we would love to hear your thoughts and tributes on the tribute page. Interment will follow on Sunday, June 13 in Margo, Saskatchewan, Lee’s original home and not far from “the lake”.
Because of the gift of modern medicine, Lee lived a long life despite heart disease (and other illnesses overcome over the years). If family or friends wish to donate to a charity, we know Lee would have appreciated your support of the Heart and Stroke Foundation or the Royal University Hospital (RUH) Foundation.
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